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Teaching and Learning Innovation

The Teaching and Learning Innovation (TLI) Series features presentations and workshops with practical takeaways, to assist faculty and academic staff in creating effective learning environments that promote student success.

Goals include:

  • sharing knowledge and new ways of thinking about classroom and academic instruction,
  • presenting innovative strategies to engage students in their own learning experience,
  • providing ideas for small teaching changes that have a transformational impact, and
  • fostering opportunities for dialogue between peers, focused on teaching, learning, and scholarship.

New content is offered every semester. Peruse current offerings and sign up here, suggest a TLI session here, and review past sessions below.

Teaching Essentials

Accessibility and Inclusivity Considerations

Building Inclusive Classrooms: Identifying and Addressing Subtle Acts of Exclusion

Facilitators: Erin Stevenson and Chase Powell
Date: February 12, 2024
Description: Our student population at EKU is incredibly and wonderfully diverse. We see their unique identities developing in our classrooms as they work out how they want to be as young adults and what they want to contribute to the world. Hurdles to this development often come in the form of subtle acts of exclusion, otherwise known as microaggressions.  As faculty, it is our responsibility to set the tone and model expectations for dialogue and interaction with the students.  By understanding the rapidly evolving language around identities we become more aware of the intersectionality of backgrounds and cultures in our classrooms. Participants in this session will gain an understanding of the importance of recognizing and supporting diverse identities (ex. racial identity, cultural identity, gender identity, sexuality, religious identity, etc.). To illustrate our points, we will share insights from recent focus groups with LGBTQ students at EKU.  The session will discuss tangible ways to create an inclusive classroom environment by recognizing subtle acts of exclusion and addressing microaggressions occurring in the classroom from either ourselves or students. Participants will be given additional resources to support continued learning.
Link to Recording
Link to Slides

Advising

Faculty Advising Resources

Facilitator: Bethany Warner
Date: September 19, 2023
Description: The Degree Works Planner is a great advising tool to engage students and help keep them on track in meeting their program requirements and progressing toward graduation. In this session, Bethany Warner, Director of the Office of Advising and Career Services, will provide faculty advisors with Degree Works Planner training, share resources, and answer any questions you may have to support your advisees.
Link to Recording

Appreciative Advising

Facilitator: Charlie Hughes
Date: March 24, 2023
Description: This presentation will review approaches from appreciative advising (Bloom, Hutson, & He, 2008). In addition, this session will discuss how this appreciative advising approach can inform decision-making not only in academic advising sessions but also in teaching preparation and instruction.
Link to Recording

Demystifying Study Abroad

Facilitator: Jennifer White
Date: March 2, 2023
Description: Learn the details of how study abroad works at EKU and what’s available for different majors so that you can talk with your students and advisees about how study abroad works at EKU!  Learn the answers to common questions about the types of study abroad courses available, transferring academic credit from international programs, using financial aid, applying for scholarships, and more.
Link to Recording

Back to Basics

How to Write Better Test Questions

Facilitator: Cindy Hayden
Date: February 13, 2024
Description: This presentation will cover how to develop fair, reliable, and valid exam questions. We will discuss principles that guide construction of tests using backward course design and exam blueprinting. Administering exams will be investigated including how to insure exam security, use of proctors, and deterring academic misconduct.  We will continue by determining poorly worded questions and answers after students have taken the test and what to do about it. The conclusion of the presentation will focus on post exam review and feedback to students.
Link to Recording

Writing and Using Learning Objectives

Facilitator: Cindy Tran
Date: January 29, 2024
Description: Learning objectives at the program, course, module, and assignment level are the clear guidelines we give students about what is expected of them for successful understanding of the material. But how often are they the after-thought in course preparation or are not included at all? This interactive workshop will examine Bloom’s and Fink’s taxonomies as strategies for writing learning objectives as well as demonstrate methods for integrating clear learning objectives into courses. Attendees are asked to bring an example of a course-level learning objectives to work with in this workshop.
Link to Recording

Strategies for Preserving Academic Integrity

Panelists: Cindy Tran, Cindy Judd, Matthew Winslow, Chris Daniel, Benjamin Freed, and Jeff Reed
Date: March 21, 2023
Description: Many faculty have recently observed an increase in academic integrity violations within their courses and have been working to counter these through several methods. In this workshop, faculty will describe course innovations they have implemented to build meaningful assignments and activities that leverage students’ intrinsic motivation to do the assignments rather than look for shortcuts as well as provide strategies for classroom discussion surrounding academic integrity.
Link to Recording

Enhanced Engagement

Building Students’ Teamwork Skills

Facilitator: Cindy Hayden
Date: February 8, 2023
Description: College educators and employers both place high value on teamwork skills needed in professional careers. This TLI will discuss various ways of providing opportunities for students to be part of a team within an existing course. Faculty will discuss ways of developing teams and grading students’ participation as a team member. Faculty will design and share short and long-term assignments or projects that require interaction with other students, individual and group accountability, group processing, and teamwork skills. Teamwork skills include communication, time management, group problem-solving, listening, critical thinking, resolving conflicts and negotiating, collaboration, leadership, and having fun!
Link to Recording

Active Learning for the Technical Classroom

Facilitator: Cindy Tran
Date: September 8, 2023
Description: Technical fields often require students to interpret diagrams, sketch and explain how machinery or a process works, and use specific terminology. These topics typically have a “right” answer that you want to solidify in students’ minds and is not open to debate or alternate interpretations. It can be hard to see how this material can be presented through small group discussions and other active learning techniques, but I assure you – they can! Come join us for a hands-on demonstration of strategies to teach terminology, diagrams, and complex processes that can transform a technical lecture into an active experience and improve student engagement in the classroom.
Link to Recording

Increasing Participation Using Class Preparation Assignments (CPAs)

Facilitators: Amanda Green and Jamie Shaffer
Date: September 13, 2023
Description: Getting students to come to read and come to class prepared has become more and more of a challenge in recent times. In this session, the presenters will discuss their experiences using Class Preparation Assignments, or CPAs, to improve class participation. CPAs are particularly useful in providing initial exposure to class concepts, which can then be more effectively explored via class activities and active learning techniques. Best practices when implementing CPAs will also be addressed.
Link to Recording

Empowering Students after the Fall Break Slump

Facilitators: Lara Vance and Starr Wentzel
Date: October 4, 2023
Description: Fall Break is approaching! For many students this can be a time to reset — some return refreshed, but for others, instructors might see decreased momentum. How can we help motivate our students to develop resilience, even when they are experiencing anxiety? This session will discuss creating a classroom environment that fosters support while also communicating with students that struggle and effort should be part of the learning experience.
Link to Recording

Pedagogical Approaches

TILT Certificate Series, Part 1

Facilitator: Rusty Carpenter
Date: August 29, 2023
Description: Transparency in Learning and Teaching (TILT) is used to describe ways in which faculty can be transparent in their teaching practices to encourage and enhance the student learning experience. The TILT approach also encourages student engagement, interest, and buy-in. Faculty who have used transparent approaches have noted that they not only led to student success but also helped with organizing course material(s), maintaining a student learner-centered approach, and assessing student learning. In this session, participants will review seven foundational ideas of transparent approaches, explore examples of transparent assignments, and review models of transparent concepts in practice. Participants will begin to develop transparent practices for use in their courses.
Link to Recording

TILT Certificate Series, Part 2

Facilitator: Rusty Carpenter
Date: September 5, 2023
Description: Transparency in Learning and Teaching (TILT) is used to describe ways in which faculty can be transparent in their teaching practices to encourage and enhance the student learning experience. The TILT approach also encourages student engagement, interest, and buy-in. Faculty who have used transparent approaches have noted that they not only led to student success but also helped with organizing course material(s), maintaining a student learner-centered approach, and assessing student learning. In this session, participants will review seven foundational ideas of transparent approaches, explore examples of transparent assignments, and review models of transparent concepts in practice. Participants will begin to develop transparent practices for use in their courses.
Link to Recording

Relationship-Rich Educational Series, Part 1

Facilitator: Casey Humphrey
Date: September 7, 2023
Description: Relationship-Rich Education (RRE) is a pedagogical approach that focuses on building human connections in order to promote student engagement and encourage success within the classroom. While Felton and Lambert’s (2020) content on RRE focuses strongly on the benefits to undergraduate students, the strategies that they discuss can be implemented throughout the entirety of the higher education experience. Participants will review the four overarching principles of RRE, explore examples of implementation of RRE within a variety of settings including pilots implemented by EKU faculty, and discuss methods of overcoming challenges of implementing RRE in a variety of sizes and styles of courses. In the first session, participants will begin to develop a pilot to introduce one or more RRE strategies into one of their courses. In the second session, participants will analyze piloted activities that were implemented into their course and discuss successes and challenges to continuing to implement RRE in the future.
Link to Recording

Relationship-Rich Educational Series, Part 2

Facilitator: Casey Humphrey
Date: November 16, 2023
Description: Relationship-Rich Education (RRE) is a pedagogical approach that focuses on building human connections in order to promote student engagement and encourage success within the classroom. While Felton and Lambert’s (2020) content on RRE focuses strongly on the benefits to undergraduate students, the strategies that they discuss can be implemented throughout the entirety of the higher education experience. This is the final session in this two-part certificate series. In this session, participants will analyze piloted activities that were implemented into their course and discuss successes and challenges to continuing to implement RRE in the future.
Link to Recording

Serving Differently Abled Students

Best Practices – Supporting Students Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing

Facilitator: Katie Moore
Date: February 2, 2023
Description: In this presentation, ASLIE professor Katie Moore will share strategies for ways that faculty can create a welcoming and effective learning environment for students who are deaf or hard of hearing.
Link to Recording

Supporting Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Facilitators: Myra Beth Bundy and Lara Vance
Date: September 15, 2023
Description: Bring your lunch and join us at the FCT&L or online as we discuss ways to support our students with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Learn more about these disorders and gain some tools for interaction.
Link to Recording

Serving Diverse Student Populations

Do you have information you’d like to share with colleagues about how best to serve our veterans, LGBTQIA+ students, and first-generation college students? Submit a proposal here and one of our staff members will be in touch!

Textbook Adoption

Textbook Adoption Tips and Tricks

Facilitators: Rin Farrar, Lee Griesheimer, and Kelly Smith
Date: September 27, 2023
Description: With winter and spring textbook adoptions right around the corner, consider attending the TLI: Textbook Adoption Tips & Tricks session. Rin Farrar from Barnes & Noble, Lee Griesheimer from the Center for Student Accessibility, and Kelly Smith from the Libraries will discuss some considerations in adopting textbooks. Learn how to re-adopt texts from a previous term, how to add new material and options for choosing “no text required” or “OER” in the online adoption portal. Learn about library alternatives to traditional adoptions, such as using textbooks that are available in eBook format or open educational resources (OER). Learn about the benefits and drawbacks of different formats. For example, what happens if you choose the electronic format and one of your students has an accommodation and needs it in print format or vice versa?
Link to Recording

The What and Why of Open Educational Resources (OER)

Facilitator: Kelly Smith
Date: August 31, 2023
Description: Booksmart has been a fantastic initiative that has saved our students millions of dollars and ensured that all students have access to their books on Day One. It has also eliminated one of the big incentives for faculty to consider adopting Open Educational Resources (OER). So why should faculty still consider adopting or creating OER? What are some benefits of OER beyond student cost savings? Did you know that research has consistently shown that OER are associated with increased student outcomes, especially for first-generation, Pell recipients, non-traditional, and non-white groups? And early research into inclusive access models are not demonstrating similarly significant outcomes? This TLI will provide attendees with a straightforward explanation of what OER actually are, an overview of recent research, and an exploration of the benefits of supplementing your courses with OER or replacing traditional textbooks altogether.
Link to Recording

Finding and Evaluating OER for Course Adoption

Facilitator: Kelly Smith
Date: September 14, 2023
Description: Ready to explore Open Educational Resources (OER) for your classes? This TLI will cover some quick strategies for locating OER, determining the copyrights they allow, and evaluating their quality. Learn how you can contribute to the OER movement by publicly reviewing these resources, or even suggesting improvements to authors. Finally, we will discuss ways to include alternative resources such as public domain works and library-subscribed resources in your course or assignment re-designs.
Link to Recording

Modifying and Creating Open Educational Resources

Facilitators: Laura Edwards, Kelly Smith, and David Stumbo
Date: March 8, 2023
Description: This session was presented as part of the Teaching and Learning Innovation Series on Open Educational Resources at Eastern Kentucky University.
Link to Recording

Writing Course Proposals

How to Craft an Honors Proposal

Facilitators: David Coleman and Randi Polk
Date: August 24, 2023
Description: Five longtime contributing faculty to EKU Honors will discuss the ways in which they have used honors seminars as venues to experiment with new teaching ideas and approaches and discuss the impact that honors teaching has had on their long-term development and growth as innovative classroom instructors. Honors administrators will also explain the process of proposing new seminar offerings for EKU Honors.
Link to Recording

Faculty Scholarship, Service, and Well-Being

Scholarship

Library Bites: Tools for Saving and Organizing References

Facilitators: Kelly Smith and Cindy Judd
Date: September 12, 2023
Description: This session was presented as part of the Teaching and Learning Innovation – Library Bites series at Eastern Kentucky University.
Link to Recording

How to Create, Build, and Maintain Your Personal Brand Online

Facilitator: Jim Blair
Date: August 30, 2023
Description: Participants will go through an exercise on establishing their personal brand and how to obtain their future career goals. Then participants will go through best practices for promoting themselves and their network online using social media platforms (primarily focusing on LinkedIn).
Link to Recording

Service
Well-Being

Navigating the Stressors and Stretchers of Teaching

Facilitator: Mike Lane 
Date: January 25, 2024
Description: This session will outline the basics of the stress response and how to effectively challenge your students and yourself without overwhelming either party. It will give tactics to find the optimal approaches for your class while avoiding burnout and exhaustion.
Link to Recording

The Troubling Trend of Faculty Burnout

Facilitators: Jamie Shaffer, Jennifer Fairchild, and Shirley O’Brien
Date: March 28, 2023
Description: According to burnout researcher Dr. Rebecca Pope-Ruark (2022) burnout is caused by chronic and unrelenting workplace stress.  Three common symptoms of burnout are “overwhelming exhaustion, feelings of cynicism and detachment from the job, and a sense of ineffectiveness and lack of accomplishment” (Maslach et al., 2001, p. 399).  This session will explore concepts from Dr. Pope-Ruark’s new book, Unraveling Faculty Burnout: Pathways to Reckoning and Renewal, with a specific focus on causes of burnout in higher education and what the author calls “four pillars of burnout resilience” (p. 19).
Link to Recording

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